A Tale of Four Droughts

California is not suffering one drought, but four. Each is a metaphor of what California has become.

The first California drought, of course, is natural. We are now in the midst of a fourth year of record low levels of snow and rain.

Californians have no idea that their state is a relatively recent construct — only 165 years old, with even less of a pedigree of accurate weather keeping. When Europeans arrived in California in the 15th and 16th centuries, they were struck by how few indigenous peoples lived in what seemed paradise — only to learn that the region was quite dry on the coast and in the interior.

Today, modern Californians have no idea of whether a four-year drought is normal, in, say, a 5,000 natural history of the region, or is aberrant — as wet years are long overdue and will return with a vengeance. That we claim to know what to expect from about 150 years of recordkeeping does not mean that we know anything about what is normal in nature’s brief millennia. Our generation may be oblivious to that fact, but our far more astute and pragmatic forefathers certainly were not.

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  • Ron MacDonald

    Look on the bright side now they can use the opportunity to do bridge repair.

  • P_F

    With so many large dams slated for near future & millions of acres of precious arable land doomed to get submerge or become permanently water logged our BC is heading the same way.

  • Morticiaa

    Implications being ? More of Canada’s water being sold and diverted to USA?

  • Exile1981

    That will effect food prices as California is responsible for 1/4 of the US production of produce.

  • DMB
  • Frau Katze

    They really need all those illegals pouring in

    Unfortunately the state is now 40 million — and growing. Illegal immigration — half of all undocumented aliens live in California — has added millions to the state population. And agriculture is a key route for Mexican immigrants to reach the middle class. Either the state should insist on closing the borders and encourage emigration out of state to no-tax states (which is already happening at about the rate of 1000 to 2000 people per week), or it should build the infrastructure and create the job opportunities to accommodate newcomers in a semi-arid landscape.

  • Just a thought

    California deserts might go dry if water subsidies are discontinued?! Oh noes!
    http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/mikeshedlock/2014/02/24/droughtstricken-california-to-get-no-irrigation-water-17-california-communities-could-run-dry-n1799559/page/full

    Drought happens.
    http://www.climatechangedispatch.com/megadrought-hysteria.html

    But it is NOT human caused climate change. It’s stupid land use policies, put in place mostly by Democrat idiots.